DirectStorage benchmark shows massive improvements in transfer speeds

Why it issues: Microsoft’s DirectStorage API guarantees to provide PCs lightning-fast load instances much like what Xbox Sequence and PlayStation 5 console customers have skilled for 2 years. As the primary sport appropriate for DirectStorage readies for launch, a benchmark exhibits precise efficiency positive aspects at retail {hardware}.

PC Video video games {{Hardware}} exams present that Microsoft’s DirectStorage API will help NVMe SSDs load property considerably sooner than SATA SSDs. In addition they supply the large benefits of GPU-based decompression over CPU-based decompression.

The location ran Microsoft’s publicly accessible Avocado Loading DirectStorage demo on a SATA SSD, a PCIe 3.0 NVMe SSD, and a PCIe 4.0 NVMe. It additionally in contrast decompression speeds between three GPUs and one CPU: an AMD Radeon RX 7900 XT, an Intel Arc A770, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 4080, and a 5.2GHz Intel i9-12900K.

The graph under exhibits the switch price of every {{hardware}} configuration in GB/s, displaying the typical results of 5 exams. NVMe SSDs carried out a number of instances sooner than SATA SSDs right here, and PCIe 4.0 had a slight benefit over PCIe 3.0. Probably weirdest of all, the A770 outperforms the RX 7900 XT and 4080 in GPU decompression regardless of being in a decrease weight class for gaming efficiency.

The demo screenshots show the distinction between CPU and GPU decompression. Some present just a few gigabytes of property taking 1.5 to five seconds to load, with CPU utilization between 30% and 100%. Others present the identical property loading in round half a second with lower than 5 % CPU utilization, indicating the GPU has taken over the job.

The demo exhibits promising preliminary outcomes for the {{hardware}} outdoors of Microsoft Labs. Moreover, they show an enormous change from 2020 exams displaying that latest video games don’t absolutely make the most of the bandwidth benefits of NVMes over SATA drives.

Nonetheless, loading a handful of avocados isn’t the identical as loading a 3D sport atmosphere. These won’t have to attend lengthy to check the present efficiency of DirectStorage. The function will debut in Sq. Enix’s Forspoken, which can launch on January 24.

At GDC in March, Sq. Enix claimed that DirectStorage permits Forspoken to load new scenes and environments in lower than two seconds on an NVMe SSD in comparison with a number of seconds on a SATA SSD and nearly half a minute on an HDD. Microsoft designed the brand new API to be used in Dwelling home windows 11. Because of its legacy storage stack, Dwelling home windows 10 methods will see solely restricted advantages.